Festival opener at Fairfield Halls will be for free, says council

Tickets for the Ambition Festival headline show at the Fairfield Halls are free, in a bid to emphasise Croydon Council’s “investment in culture”, according to officials working in Fisher’s Folly.

This cultural freebie follows on from the central Croydon cycle race earlier this month, for which the organisers were paid £148,000 of public money.

The bill includes Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker, recent winners of Radio 2’s Folk Award, and the acclaimed British/Asian musical stars, Circle of Sound.

Top of the bill: folk artists Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker are playing the Fairfield Halls on Saturday

Top of the bill: folk artists Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker are playing the Fairfield Halls on Saturday

Timothy Godfrey, Croydon’s cabinet member for culture, leisure and sport, said: “We’ve done our best to keep as much of the festival as we can free, and we decided that this Saturday night headline event is one where we want people to come along and experience the best of two well-matched flavours of music.

Whether interpreting centuries old songs or singing their own authentic lyrics, Clarke’s jewel-like voice and Walker’s musical tact and flair for arrangement (it says here in the Croydon Council press release…) mean their live performances always receive rapturous reviews. Their latest release Nothing Can Bring Back the Hour was also nominated for a Best Album award.

Circle of Sound is a collaboration between Soumik Datta on the 19-stringed Sarod and drummer Bernhard Schimpelsberger – now there’s a “headline act” who’s unlikely ever to see his name in a headline…

“Resonating with deep Indian ragas, urban beats, glockenspiels, and a spirited rock attitude, they create a powerful fusion that the BBC describes as ‘the vanguard of British Asian music’,” is what the council press office appears to have copied from somewhere or other.

Because the event is in the main Fairfield concert hall, booking in advance is still strongly recommended to get the best seats.

The council press release omitted to mention the day of the concert. Inside Croydon‘s loyal reader reckons it is July 25.

Visit www.ambitionfest.com for details.

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
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2 Responses to Festival opener at Fairfield Halls will be for free, says council

  1. Peter Rogers says:

    Am I to take this to mean they haven’t sold any tickets or that they’ve left it too late to publicize the event? Whatever the answer I’m glad the borough can afford to give away so much free sport and culture, sadly I’ll be washing my hair that night – very, very slowly

    • mraemiller says:

      Who knows? but the other day I asked if it was possible to spend theatre vouchers at the Fairfield Halls as I happened to come across an old one lying about and I believe there is a theatre there … a question to which the answer is “No we have our own Gift Vouchers” which seemed to me to be taking non fungibility rather far… I mean I know they cross between music and theatre and there probably are costs for participating in any such system but … well … erm … that’s different of them …I thought.

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